I had an interesting conversation with a friend several weeks ago. Admittedly, the day prior had been a very rough day filled with frustration and disappointment. On that particular day, the darkness, despair, and devastation of this world revealed itself with an increased intensity around every corner. While maybe I was expecting a pity party, and truthfully it seemed well-deserved, this friend of mine instead responded by simply asking me if I was more concerned about the problem or the solution.
In my moment of ranting, I realized that not only was I focused on the problem, but I was also contributing to the problem. The anger and frustration that I felt because of hard encounters with others undoubtedly was contagious because now I was spewing it out onto others that I care about.
Even during the beautiful Christmas season that is upon us, there is still hurt and brokenness. And this will be the case as long as we live on this earth. But we get to choose if we want to be part of the problem or the solution.
This life may bring problems, but Jesus Christ brings HOPE to what feels hopeless. And as His children, we are given the privilege to share this Hope not only on our good days but on the rough ones as well.
We get to choose if we are going to be part of the problem or solution.
The solution is CHRIST and the way that we put Him on display is LOVE.
We love not because it is deserved but instead, because it is what we are commanded to do as Christians.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” John 13:34
So, when the server is rude – respond in kindness.
When the car cuts you off when already late –resist the urge to honk.
When a family member is frustrating you –focus on the big picture before opening your mouth.
When your boss fails to acknowledge your value –remember where your worth comes from.
The truth is that people are going to hurt and disappoint you at some point, but you get to choose how you respond.
The Bible tells us that “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
As ones who have been shown the undeserved blessings of God, may we strive to love others in this way. Not to keep the peace or avoid the problem, but instead to we walk in obedience to God and share the Hope that His Son Jesus brings to all who accept Him.
My prayer for myself and all of you as well is that we see the Hope that Jesus brings in all moments of life and that we share that same hope by loving others just as Christ has loved us.
Jennifer N. Pearson